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Month of July

The 23rd Day

Commemoration of the Holy Hieromartyr Apollinaris, Bishop of Ravenna

At Vespers

On "Lord, I have cried ...", these stichera of the hieromartyr, in Tone VI: Spec. Mel.: "On the third day ..." -

Antioch the Great boasteth greatly in thy birth, O wondrous Apollinaris; Old Rome is glad, for thou wast made a bishop therein, O saint; and Ravenna, thy city, rejoiceth exceedingly in thee.

Whithersoever thou didst go, O hieromartyr, thou didst fearlessly preach the Trinity; and, tortured for thy Faith and thrice banished, thou didst thrice return to confess the Lord.

Sent forth by the preëminent apostle like a ray emitted by the sun, with the light of grace which shone within thee, O holy one, thou didst illumine those benighted by the devil's illusions.

Glory ... : Idiomelon, in Tone VI -

Come, all ye who love the martyrs, and, bearing lamps and chanting hymns of praise, let us honour the great hieromartyr Apollinaris, the companion and disciple of the first-enthroned apostle, the renowned hierarch of Ravenna, the enlightener of Bologna and adornment of all Italy, the champion of the one true Faith; and making earnest entreaty to him, let us beseech his intercession with all humility, that by his mediation before the Lord of all we may obtain deliverance from the passions which oppress our souls, forgiveness of all our sins, and a place with him a t the right hand of the throne of glory.

Now & ever ... : Theotokion; or this stavrotheotokion: Spec. Mel.: "Having set all aside ..." -

Of old, when the unblemished ewe-lamb, the immaculate Mistress, beheld her Lamb upon the tree of the Cross, she exclaimed maternally and cried out in wonder: "O Child most sweet, what is this new and all-glorious sight? How is it that the ungrateful assembly hath given Thee over to the tribunal of Pilate and condemneth the Life of all to death? Yet do I hymn Thine ineffable condescension, O Word!"

Aposticha stichera from the Octoechos; and Glory ... :

Idiomelon, in Tone II -

Taking up thy cross, O saint of God, in the footsteps of the most blessed apostle thou didst follow after Christ, bearing His easy yoke and light burden, until, full of years, thou didst lay down thy life in witness to Him Who is the way, the truth and the life for all mankind. Wherefore, as thou standest now before Him in the courts of heaven, O holy Apollinaris, beseech Him to treat with clemency those who honour thy holy glorious memory.

Now & ever ... : Theotokion; or this stavrotheotokion Spec. Mel.: "When from the Tree ..." -

Beholding Thee nailed to the Tree of the Cross, O Jesus, she who tasted not of wedlock said, weeping: "O my sweet Child, wherefore hast Thou abandoned me who alone gave Thee birth? O unapproachable Light of the all-unoriginate Father, haste Thou and be glorified, that those who glorify Thy divine sufferings may receive divine glory!"

Troparion, in Tone III -

Rejoicing, thou didst willingly shed thy blood for the sake of Christ from Whose piercèd side blood and water gushed forth to wash away the stain of sin from those who had fallen through the beguilement of the ancient foe, O Apollinaris, bright luminary of Ravenna and beacon of salvation for all Italy.

At Matins

At "God is the Lord ...", the troparion of the saint, twice; Glory ... , Now & ever ... : Theotokion.

Canon of the hieromartyr, the acrostic whereof is (in Greek) "Meet it is to celebrate the hierarch" the composition of Bartholemew, in Tone VIII -

Ode I

Irmos: Having traversed the water as though it were dry land, and escaped the evil of Egypt, the Israelite cried aloud: Let us chant unto our Deliverer and God!

O holy Apollinaris, who delightest in ineffable and divine glory before the throne of God in heaven, by thy supplications save those who celebrate thy memory with love.

Instructed by the teachings of Peter, thou didst ardently yearn for Christ, the living Rock, O Apollinaris, minister of grace; and thou thyself becamest a rock of piety.

Laying his holy hands upon thee, the holy Apostle Peter consecrated thee a bishop to destroy the deception of ungodliness and to dispel the gloom of ignorance.

Thou wast invested with the omnipotent power of God to destroy the base deceit of hostile hades and to drive away the cloud of ignorance.

Theotokion: Without utterly leaving the bosom of the Father, the Word of God came to become a babe through thy pure womb, O Virgin, to impart virginity unto men.


Irmos: Plant Thou the fear of Thee in the hearts of Thy servants, O Lord, and be Thou the confirmation of us who call upon Thee in truth.

The city of Ravenna, O blessed one, delighteth to have thee as its guide, for its aid and protection, and for deliverance by thee from the darkness of delusion.

The wise Apostle Peter sent thee forth from Rome like a radiant divine beam, to illumine with the light of the Trinity those who lie under the shadow of delusion.

When Irenæus saw that his own son had received sight [for his eyes], he was himself illumined by thee and received the light of baptism, magnifying Christ.

O holy hierarch of the Lord, by thy constant supplications to God deliver from all need those who with faith celebrate thy memory.

Theotokion: O Virgin Mary, after birthgiving thou didst remain a virgin, as thou wast before giving birth; wherefore, thou art the safekeeping, glory and protection of virgins.

Sessional hymn, in Tone VIII: Spec. Mel.: "Of the Wisdom ..." -

Consumed by the fire of thy love for Christ, the Wisdom of the Father, O holy hierarch and athlete of the Lord, thou didst hold pagan wisdom in disdain; and by thy grace and the wisdom of thy discourse thou didst correct the foolish and, demolishing the temples of the idols, didst in their stead raise up churches to the glory of the living God: wherefore, with faith we cry aloud unto thee and chant: Entreat Christ our God, that He grant forgiveness of sins unto us who celebrate thy holy memory with faith.

Glory ... , Now & ever ... : Theotokion, in the same melody -

All of us, the generations of men, bless thee, the Virgin who, alone among women, without seed gave birth to God in the flesh; for the fire of the Godhead dwelt within thee, and thou didst nourish the Creator and Lord with milk as a babe. Wherefore, we, the generation of angels and men, glorify thy holy birthgiving as is meet, and together cry out to thee: Entreat Christ God, that He grant remission of offences unto those who bow down with faith before thine all-holy Offspring.

Stavrotheotokion -

The ewe-lamb, beholding the Lamb, Shepherd and Deliverer on the Cross, exclaimed, weeping, and, bitterly lamenting, cried aloud: "The world rejoiceth, receiving deliverance through Thee; but my womb doth burn, beholding Thy crucifixion, which Thou endurest in the loving-kindness of Thy mercy. O long-suffering Lord, Thou abyss and inexhaustible well-spring of mercy, take pity and grant remission of offences unto those who with faith hymn Thy divine sufferings!"

Ode IV

Irmos: I have heard. O Lord, the mystery of Thy dispensation; I have understood Thy works, and have glorified Thy divinity.

As it is written, the people who sat in darkness and the shadow of death beheld the great Light through thy works, O most sacred one.

By thine intercession was Thecla released of her chronic infirmity, O most blessed one, and came to believe in Jesus our God, Who granteth life to the dead.

We who keep thy most holy memory in sacred manner entreat thee, O most holy one, that thou preserve our souls by thy holy prayers.

Theotokion: O most holy Mother of God, thou gavest birth to the newborn Babe Who is the Creator of Adam. Beseech Him to free me from the malice of hades, the ancient foe.

Ode V

Irmos: O Lord Who by divine knowledge didst bring the ends of the earth into the light out of the night of ignorance, enlighten me with the dawning of Thy love for mankind.

Like wolves, the cruel torturers unjustly tore to pieces thee who wast a most innocent lamb, when thou didst proclaim to them Jesus, the Lamb of the living God, O wise one.

Rome doth boast and glory in the possession of Peter, the rock of faith; and the city of Ravenna exulteth to possess thee, the disciple of Peter, O blessed one.

O wise and holy Apollinaris, thou didst follow in the footsteps of Peter, who was preëminent among the disciples of the Lord; wherefore, thou didst perform great miracles.

Theotokion: After giving birth thou didst remain a virgin, as thou wast before birth giving, O most pure and immaculate Virgin; wherefore, we entreat thee importunately to invest us, thy servants, again with the virtue of virginity most pure.

Ode VI

Irmos: Cleanse me, O Saviour, for many are my transgressions; and lead me up from the abyss of evils, I pray, for to Thee have I cried, and Thou hast hearkened to me, O God of my salvation.

O most excellent Apollinaris, who art full of wisdom divine, loving God with all thy heart thou becamest a god by adoption, by grace divine thou didst work wonders and great miracles, and wast extolled by all.

By thy supplication, O wise one, a handmaiden was freed from an unclean spirit, and Boniface, who before was mute, by a wondrous miracle was given the ability to speak, and glorified God, Whose good pleasure it was to exalt thee.

As thou dost now rejoice where dwell the choirs of the martyrs and apostles, O thou who art blessed of God, deliver from all temptations all who with love and piety celebrate thy memory.

Theotokion: Lo! the rich among the people fall down before thee in supplication, O most immaculate one who art full of pity, for thou gavest birth unto God Who is almighty in loving-kindness; wherefore, I pray thee: Have pity on my soul!

Kontakion, in Tone VIII -

From the East thou didst shine forth like the sun, and with divine grace didst put the shadows of the West to flight, O glorious Apollinaris, holy apostle of Christ, mighty defender of thy flock. Pray thou for us who celebrate thy holy memory with faith.

Ikos: As a pillar of piety and a tower of the Church, as an ever-shining star casting light upon those who sleep in darkness, as a minister of the Word, I pray thee to dispel the gloom of the passions which have long oppressed me. By thy supplications which are full of divine light illumine my soul, loose thou my tongue, and make me worthy to offer up praise with faith; for I know that thou protectest from dangers those who celebrate thy memory with love.


Irmos: Quenching the most destructive power of the Chaldæan furnace, the youths cried out to the Creator, Who had descended in the form of an Angel: Blessed and praised art Thou, O God of our fathers!

To proclaim the incarnation of the Son of God unto all, O blessed one, thou didst gladly endure the torments of the flesh, while chanting with thanksgiving: Blessed and praised art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Scorched by the full fire of thy discourse, the heirs of eternal fire cast thee onto burning coals, O holy martyr; but thou didst remain unharmed in the midst of the fire, chanting: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!

By thine intercession, O holy Apollinaris, deliver from perils and evils those who with faith celebrate thy most holy memory, and who in thy temple chant unto Christ: Blessed and praised art Thou, O God of our fathers!

As once thou didst by thy mediation restore a dead maiden to life, O holy hierarch, so now return to life me who am dead in sins, for I chant: Blessed and praised art Thou, O God of our fathers!

Theotokion: We who have placed our hope on thee, O Virgin, strive to maintain virginity and chastity; wherefore, we chant to thy Son: Blessed and praised art Thou, O God of our fathers!


Irmos: When the musical instruments sounded and innumerable were those who worshiped the image in Dura, the three youths, refusing to obey the tyrant's command, hymned and glorified the Lord for all ages.

Having become a temple of the Trinity, thou didst demolish the temples of deception, while thou didst lead into the temple of God those who chanted with faith: Praise and exalt the Lord supremely for all ages!

The ungodly tyrant commanded that thy holy mouth be smitten with a stone, O hierarch; but this did not hinder thee from chanting: Praise and exalt the Lord supremely for all ages!

A leper, cleansed of his leprosy by thy prayer, piously blessed the Saviour; and a blind man, having recovered his sight, blessed Christ, the Bestower of light, chanting: Bless ye the Lord unto all ages!

Theotokion: O most holy Virgin, my Mistress, wielding thee like a most mighty weapon, I vanquish all the power of the evil demons; wherefore, I chant: Praise and exalt the Lord supremely for all ages!

Ode IX

Irmos: Every ear trembleth to hear of the ineffable condescension of God, for the Most High willingly came down even to the flesh, becoming man through the Virgin's womb. Wherefore, we, the faithful, magnify the all-pure Theotokos.

The choirs of hierarchs and hosts of the martyrs welcomed thee among them as a holy martyr and bishop, O holy hierarch. Wherefore, in their company enlist us who keep thy memory with faith, celebrating thy holy solemnity on this day.

O most holy hierarch and pastor, the whole Church hath thee as an eminent hierarch, as a most holy martyr, as an unshakable pillar of piety, as a companion of the apostles, the boast of spiritual athletes, the might of the Faith.

By thy supplication, O excellent hierarch of Christ, thou hast delivered all from perils, every need, sin, the passions and tribulations, that we may be counted worthy to celebrate thine eminent and most sacred memory with hymns divine.

Theotokion: O Word of God Who art God Thyself, w e venerate the holy icon of Thee and Thy Virgin Mother, who holdeth in her arms Thee Who for our sake becamest a little babe. Thee do we beseech: By her intercession make us worthy to keep the lily of virginity intact and to glorify Thee in heaven among the choirs of the virgins.

Exapostilarion: Spec. Mel.: "O immutable Light ..." -

He Who dwelleth immutable in uncreated light hath shown thee to be a splendid adornment of hierarchs and the glory of martyrs, O most wondrous hieromartyr Apollinaris; wherefore, be thou ever mindful of us who hymn thee.

Aposticha stichera from the Octoechos; and Glory ... :

Idiomelon, in Tone VIII -

With fitting laudation let us praise the glorious hieromartyr Apollinaris, the scourge of the demons and champion of the Faith, the companion of the saints and angels, the intercessor for all Christians, who by his fearless witness to Christ our God brought many to the Church, the ark of salvation; and falling down with compunction, let us cry unto him: Entreat the Lord, O saint, that our souls be saved.

Now & ever ... : Theotokion; or this stavrotheotokion: Spec. Mel.: "O all-glorious wonder ..." -

The unblemished ewe-lamb, beholding her Lamb upon the Tree, crucified of His own will, cried out, lamenting pitiably: "Woe is me, O my most beloved Child! How hath the ungrateful assembly of the Jews recompensed Thee, desiring to leave me bereft of Thee, O most beloved One?"

The canon, sessional hymn, kontakion and ikos for Hieromnartyr Apollinaris were composed in Greek by the blessed Bartholemew of Calabria (U ca. 1040). All the stichera and the exapostilarion were composed by the reader Isaac E. Lambertsen.

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